I used to draw a lot. Most of my drawings were either fanart or sketches for characters and scenes in my writing. Some of it was pretty good; most of it was fairly bad. I posted often to sites like Elfwood and deviantART but it’s been a long, long time I since I really seriously picked up a pencil and started to sketch. Lately, though, (and it started out simply), I’ve been keeping a sketchbook in the living room so when I got bored with either the computer or television, I’d draw a little. Nothing impressive. Nothing to brag about. But it did get me started again. Then, last night, due to my roommate’s brilliant suggested, I started something I was actually proud of and wanted to show to the world when it was finished. So I rooted through my room, found the software for my printer/scanner, uploaded it, and spent the rest of the evening drawing instead of reading.
Now, this might not seem to have a lot to do immediately with writing, but the majority of sketches I made are what fuels inspiration behind a lot of characters, stories, and plot points were these character drawings. But, also, in a sense, what fueled me to really connect with the characters and get excited about writing them was also the feedback from the various (albeit small) communities I had built up through those websites. I’m the type of person who thrives on feedback, on conversation, and that’s something that’s generally been missing in the past few years, since I graduated college and tried to make my way through other aspects of the world.
So I’m going to try drawing again. I might even post character/work related pictures here. I’ve been feeling a disconnect for a long time with the fantasy/sci-fi world I write from, Aryneth, and I think this lack of drawing, this lack of visually getting the characters out onto paper (as apposed to just lyrically) will bring a real benefit in delving myself back into it. I am trying to write more “non-genre” fiction, sure, but I definitely don’t want to let the fantastical slip through my imagination just yet…or ever.
I do think that it’s interesting that the real thing that drove this new commitment to sketching home was getting my scanner to work. Essentially, the thing that drives me to do something is knowing that someone could look at it and appreciate it. Through and through, I write for others just as much as I write for myself. That’s probably a fault, but I think it’s probably a common one. We like to know that people can get as invested in something we created as we ourselves are; it’s a validation that all that time and energy is not entirely wasted on ourselves.